Students today are undoubtedly a more discerning, demanding lot than those portrayed in TV programmes such as ‘The Young Ones’.
Although the antisocial anarchy and extreme squalor of the popular sitcom may have been exaggerated, for many graduates older than their late twenties, sharing a house with four or five strangers was an experience akin to a perverse rite of passage.
While communal areas are still acceptable for many students, an emerging trend called pod living is finding favour with those wanting greater privacy.
Pods are self-contained, albeit compact, rented living spaces in a student accommodation block. Usually comprising a basic room with bed, desk, washstand and essential furniture, pods often have a kitchenette. They can be a lot cheaper than plush private halls. Rental prices of £125 to £145 per week on 48 to 50 week contracts will usually include heating, double-glazing and fast broadband. Some sites often offer gyms, entertainment and storage too.
While millennials are very social online, they can be more reserved in the real world – spending more time physically alone and indoors by choice than ever before.
With the average student possessing thousands of pounds’ worth of electronic kit and high value ancillaries, there are also practical considerations behind the shift away from communal living. A self-contained unit that is difficult for anyone else to access offers greater protection for valuable belongings.
Pod living also offers a much greater degree of personal security and residents do not have the awkwardness of sharing with somebody they don’t get on with.
The advantages are also apparent to older undergraduates as pods also suit mature students, who have rented or owned their own homes and value privacy and security.